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Wayne State men's hoops coach David Greer resigns; led program to five NCAAs

Tony Paul
The Detroit News

Detroit — David Greer, the longest-serving men's basketball coach in Wayne State history, has resigned, effective immediately, the university announced Wednesday afternoon.

Greer cited a lack of passion for his decision, which comes earlier in the Warriors' 2021-22 season.

Assistant coach E.J. Haralson will be interim head coach for the rest of the season.

Wayne State men's basketball coach David Greer has resigned, effective immediately.

"The timing is not the best, but I always told myself that whenever I wake up and the passion was not there, it was time to do something else," Greer said in a statement released by the school. "I have faith in my staff (Lorenzo Neely and Haralson). They have been with me almost since Day 1. They will do a good job and provide leadership for the program.

"Thanks to all the Tartars/Warriors for embracing me and my family throughout the years. I've met some amazing people and I will certainly cherish all the friendships.

"Thanks to all the mothers and fathers that entrusted their young men to us at Wayne State. I take great pride in the people we developed over the years.

"I've been part of a team my whole life and now that is coming to an end it is scary. I am certainly appreciative of Wayne State University for allowing me to be part of their team."

Greer was hired in 2001, the first head coach hired by athletic director Rob Fournier. He led the program to five Division II NCAA Tournament appearances, including in the COVID-altered 2020-21 season. Greer's record was 266-261, marking the most wins in program history.

He was a two-time winner of coach of the year in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, in 2012-13 and last season.

The Warriors opened the regular season Friday, losing at Ashland, 59-50. They lost an exhibition game to Michigan, 87-54, at the new Wayne State Fieldhouse, shared by the Pistons' G League team. 

Wayne State was to play Lewis on Wednesday night, in the Warriors' new arena.

"The contribution of David to this department goes far beyond the winningest coach in our 104-year basketball history," Fournier said. "It is a legacy realized everyday with the hundreds of young people who he has impacted, and in many of those cases, positively altered the course of their lives. That is a story that will be overlooked by many, but not by me or the young men who were the recipients of that personal guidance.

"People will read about David's decision and believe, or imagine, whatever they want when a coach steps down. But I can best summarize his choice as like a great coach, or like a great player, knowing when it is best to step off the stage. In this case, leaving behind some great performances that some witnessed on the court but also so many more were realized outside the spotlight. I feel blessed to have seen both."

At Wayne State, Greer coached 17 all-region players, 17 first-team All-GLIAC selections, 21 All-GLIAC defensive-team selections and 49 All-GLIAC academic selections.

Before landing the Wayne State job, Greer was an assistant at Detroit Mercy for six seasons. He previously coached at Tiffin, where he was a head coach, and Youngstown State, Ohio and Akron, where he was an assistant coach. Greer played collegiately at Bowling Green, where he's in the school's athletics Hall of Fame, and remains the career assist leader in the Mid-American Conference.

Haralson joined Greer's staff in October 2003. Before that, he coached at Detroit Finney, as an assistant and head coach, helping lead the program to its first-ever Public School League title. Haralson played basketball at Mott Community College, and later at Detroit Mercy, helping the Titans to an NCAA Tournament berth.

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tpaul@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @tonypaul1984